What’s your writing background? When did you begin writing and what inspired you?
I was born with a metaphorical pen and an ability to see beyond the surface. The first layer never satisfied me. I always wanted to know what hid behind the pretty mask…or the ugly behaviour, or the sudden change…or the lack of ability to not connect the triangle’s dots of existence: Heart-Mind-Soul. People, life, and the world fascinated me. I wanted to understand and had many conversations with myself on the hows, whats, and whys.
I never saw a green door and just called it a green door, rather an ‘earthly colored connection to an unknown world of opportunity’. I had this never-ending vocabulary of metaphors and figures of speech and I didn’t know where they came from. Also, many people couldn’t understand what I was saying…and as strange as it sounds, I enjoyed that…not being understood…speaking a language only I and a few others understood.
I didn’t have many friends growing up. I recall family was making the ends meet and I developed the urge to grow up too fast in order to make a difference and impact my family positively. I never wanted to be a weight on them, but rather a blessing…for which I worked hard, as if it wasn’t enough to just breathe and live… Embracing dance, music, God, poetry, and the heart of ‘what can I do to see my mother smile?’ became my favorite friends. They were so good to me.
So I guess that’s where it all started…as a rejection from ‘friends’, as a need to see my mother smile, as an answer to the cold shoulders of the world. I was going to speak my metaphorical language and be different. I wasn’t going to be them…judging my torn shoes…or lack of multiple outfits, or my image… I was going to evaluate hearts and souls, and I would find beauty in everything… I refused to be them!
What inspires me to write? TRUTH! I love truth and I absolutely enjoy the process of bringing that truth alive through my voice, be it a song, poetry, prose or a book. I also have a mind that is often ruled by my heart, but we are all luckily in harmony and aligned with TRUTH. If it isn’t truth we don’t do it, live it, sing it, write it, dance it, witness it, or get involved with it.
Honest writing kicks my ego too. I work hard to not be an issue, to do things right, to be good, to excel, and then honest writing reminds me: you did this too, you fell here too, you too were wrong here; and self replies: you are right TRUTH…I was…I did…I am sorry. In this way, honest writing makes me not a judger or a preacher toward the audience, rather a part of them.
Through my writing, I share my mistakes and my successes. I share my strength, my faith, my thoughts and my actions, and hope we can all embrace a journey that has a bidirectional inspiration.
How often do you write? And how do you manage to fit in writing among other commitments?
I write as often as I can. My inspirations are random. They hit my mind while driving on the freeway or while I am late for work or in a hurry for teaching dance (like hello… can you be more convenient please ;)) So I have to stop and write it somewhere to not forget it. I often wonder ‘how did that thought hit my mind?’ Never found the answer apart from the faith that my inspiration is a blessing, a reason for a difference, and I wasn’t surely going to keep it to myself.
Expressing myself through quotes became a daily duty. Friends and strangers would come teary-eyed to thank me about the inspiration, about how much they needed to hear that and look beyond the pain. I felt overwhelmed by a blessing that I couldn’t possibly have earned it myself. I understood I was a tool to build and wake up consciences and I enjoyed the fact that I could bring a difference. This fact brought my first published book called ‘THE BOOK’ made up by 231 quotes of life, love and enlightenment.
With today’s technology, to write means to give your thoughts a home and invite people in for dinner or tea. We all seek to be welcomed and belong somewhere, and blessed are those whose home is warm with love and care.
In which genre do you most enjoy writing?
Someone once told me that my way of writing is different from today’s writing. It resembles Shakespearian prose and times. I write in a prose form and most of the time I rhyme. Punctuation and irony defines my tone in my speech. I don’t follow rules. And I do like my ellipsis (….). It doesn’t only mean that the thought goes on. It also means I often write as I think and that suspense gives me enough time to pull the words out of my mind. A few of the reviews on my book expressed that I write as I speak, as I am…no mask, no second identity. ‘In the book, you are who we meet’- they said. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I also am a songwriter. I write my songs. I write free verses, which then are turned to music, or I write inspired by the tracks, which tends to be more successful. Music is my love, my voice beyond my outspoken prose speech. If you want to hear the truth, check out my music. My songs are all based on my life or that of the other people who impacted or effected me. My love, my frustration, my falling, my climbing, my strength, my actions are all mirrored in my music… and I make sure it always ends with me winning…because as long as I am alive, respect myself, love my imperfections, and am capable to balance everything in an active peace of mind…I am always winning.
What draws you to write in that genre?
Well, I always associated poetry with something pretty…birds singing, flowers blooming, spring is here, summer is there etc etc. But that’s not my goal with my writing. I don’t write about what’s visible or first layer actions. Me and my thoughts run deep. We talk about doubts, feelings, actions, independent thinking, political truth, judgement, emotions, love, lies, independence, inspirations, and strength. We talk about truth, about conclusions, about growing, about changing. We are a psychological lesson colored in metaphors. I feel prose gives me that freedom of expression without the need of rules. I don’t like rules. I value inspirations. I am an artist, not a scientist.
Can you tell me about your current project(s)?
I just published my first book called ‘The Book’. The title is simple yet so wide in meaning. ‘The Book’ is made of 231 quotes, and is a self-help spiritual book of true thoughts, phrases, lessons, inspirations, love and identification. The quotes aim to enlighten and inspire. Therefore this is the book you might need when you are happy to get an affirmation; this is the book that you might need when you are hurt to get an inspiration; this is the book you would want to give your daughter before going to college; this is the book you would gift to your friend that is going through some difficult moments. I like to believe, this is THE BOOK we all need, hence ‘THE BOOK’ was the best name I could have given it.
Being a singer/actress/writer/model/dancer/humanitarian naturally packs my schedule with a lot of projects. I am recording and writing more music. I can sing in six different languages, so the freedom and potential to collaborate internationally keeps me busy. I am also working on a few movie projects, yet to be approved, and also I am officially starting my non-profit organization BECHLEM* (Because He leads me, I shine) on January 2014. Paperwork is eating my patience alive, but my love for the kids and bringing a difference is stronger than any political jargon or red tape. My non-profit organization will bring an emotional, psychological, educational, and financial difference in the life of our children. It is definitely an unfolding dream waiting to bloom.
What are your writing plans for the future?
My next book will be a non-fictional story, but before I jump into another journey I want to first enjoy the many intertwined journeys I have already taken. I want to first see the world’s embrace on ‘The Book’.
Where can people find out more about you?
My official website is www.anjezamusic.com where you can find all about my multiple intertwined journeys.
My non-profit, BECHLEM*, has a Facebook page here.